Sunday, December 11, 2011

Book of Mormon Sunday II- 2 Nephi 15-21

    My focus in this read through of the Book of Mormon is to find and consider evidence of the strengthening power of the atonement. One of the most beautiful images given in this reading block is the sanctification of Isaiah. 
  2 Nephi 16:5 "Then said I: Wo is unto me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips; and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for mine eyes have seen the King, the Lord of Hosts. Then flew one of the seraphim unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar; And he laid it upon my mouth, and said: Lo, this has touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged."
  Isaiah is in a panic as the realization comes to him of his mortal state before the Lord. He is cleansed and healed by a live coal. The hot coal is taken off the altar at the tabernacle. This altar is a symbol of the blood sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

 With this symbol he is healed, cleansed and made strong enough to carry out his mission of crying repentance to Israel and testifying of the Messiah, Jesus Christ.
  The coming of the Messiah is prophesied and used as a sign to Ahaz the king, who does not want full disclosure in front of Isaiah. The coming of a Messiah is here tied to the future of Israel and it's strength in combating against it's enemies. Will Ahaz live to see this sign? No, but Isaiah's prophecy will.
 2 Nephi 17:14 "Therefore, the Lord himself shall give you a sign -- Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and shall bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil and to choose the good. For before the child shall know to refuse the evil and choose the good, the land that thou abhorrest shall be forsaken of both her kings."

  2 Nephi 19:6 "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder; and his name shall be called, Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace."
  There are so many layers of meaning in Isaiah. What applies to the House of Israel can also apply to us as individuals. The prophecies of the latter-days promise a great destruction but also a great healing as the atonement puts right all that was lost through apostasy.
 2 Nephi 20:27 "And it shall come to pass in that day that his burden shall be taken away from off thy shoulder, and his yoke from off thy neck, and the yoke shall be destroyed because of the anointing." 
  The burdens are our sins and the effects of mortality. These are only lifted by the anointed one who is Jesus Christ.
  2 Nephi 21:10 "And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek; and his rest shall be glorious."
  His rest is glorious and Isaiah describes the strengthening power of Jesus Christ with perfection.
    Here are some sketches I made of this scripture block.

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